Want Your Dog to be Best-Behaved in the Neighbourhood?
It’s easy for you to see how great your dog is, but it’s not always easy for others to see it. Other people’s pets tend to make people nervous — even among other dog owners!
It’s not personal, but keeping yourself and your dog on best behavior can go a long way and show that you are a responsible dog owner.
Do the Basics
Puppies need shots
Before you even think of socializing your dog with fellow canines at the park, doggie daycare, or obedience school, Fido must have his vaccines. This not only protects your dog, but also the other dogs.
Make sure your dog has ID tags, in fact, many places designed for dogs require them. If you have a puppy, be sure to check that they are old enough. It’s common for there to be a minimum age requirement as well. If you’re uncertain if your puppy is ready to socialize with other dogs, don’t hesitate to check in with your vet.
Scoop the Poop
As you head out of the house with your canine companion, you’ll need to grab plenty of bags. You don’t want to be “that person” that can’t be bothered to clean up after your dog. Don’t ruin it for all other dog owners.
Your dog can’t clean up after itself, so it’s YOUR job!
Also, don’t forget to pick up the waste in your yard as well. Not only will your backyard smell better, but nobody wants to live next to the house filled with dog waste. Gross!
At the Park
If you are lucky enough for there to be a dog park nearby, take advantage of it. Not only is it healthy for your dog, but it can help them expel some of their excess energy at home.
Do not just let your dog loose in the park. You are always responsible for your dog’s behavior and need to keep an eye on him at all times. If your dog is skittish of the other dogs or overly aggressive, remove him or her immediately to avoid any potentially dangerous confrontations.
PetMD reminds owners that some behaviors such as barking, growling, wrestling, bowing and chasing are normal, but to watch out when Fido gets out of hand so you can step in.
Train your dog not to run up to strangers. Someone who does not know your dog can misinterpret Fido’s friendly behavior as an act of aggression. To avoid making anyone nervous, do not let your dog approach unless asked first and respect those who do not want to interact with your pet.
Outside the home, your dog should always be on their leash. The only exception is designated dog areas such as the dog park. Not only do unleashed dogs make people nervous, but also it makes them harder to control. Know your dog’s triggers – other dogs, cars and bikers – and use the leash to steer your pet out of the way when necessary.
The Animal Humane Society urges you to not allow your dog to play with another while on the leash. This can not only harm your dog, but someone else’s if they start to roughhouse. Let the dogs sniff each other for five seconds then move on.
No Barking Policy
Even when you’re at home, you should be mindful of the neighbors. Do not dismiss any noise complaints about your dog’s barking. Fido might be yapping away when you’re not home. Instead, investigate the reasons for this behavior and then work on curbing it.
If your pet is barking at cars through the window, block his view. If he is barking for your attention, train him that’s not how to gain it. Your neighbors will appreciate the effort.
A Dog’s Reputation
Overall, a dog reflects the behavior and mood of their owner. Be mindful of how you act and teach your furry friend to behave properly. As an extension of your family, your dog’s manners matter. Putting in the effort to properly train your pet will get you both off on the right foot.